Weathering HO scale trains is more art than science. There are many weathering techniques and you will find that each weathering artist has a technique that is different from his fellow artists. Also, there are many different weathering products available. You may end up using a spectrum of products such as enamels, acrylics and powders or you may just use acrylics and powders.

weathering ho scale trainsThe attached picture shows a coal car I weathered as follows: (1) air brush a “grayish” acrylic to make the car appear oxidized, (2) brush on rust colored acrylic on seams, (3) use rust / ocher color powder to enhance rust on car, (4) use a paint pen / stick (or a “Q tip”) to color wheels (sides only, do not paint where wheel contacts track), (5) seal acrylic / powder with spray matte finish, and, if desired, (6) reapply rust / ocher powers over matte. Several other small things I did was to paint a dab or two of rust on the coupler and paint silver on the tip of the coupler hose.

Some of these items are inexpensive and can be purchased at places like Home Depot (the matte finish spray) or your favorite big box hardware store, Michael’s Craft store or other craft / hobby stores.

Remember that many of the weathering techniques are applicable to both locomotives and rolling stock. The primary difference in weathering a locomotive is that you need to take steps to protect the electrical and movement components from being fouled by paint and sealant.

Below is a list of links to other instructional media on the subject of weathering

1. Good tips from a forum. Click here.

2. Video explanation with basics and more. Click here.

3. Another basics weathering video. Click here.

4. Big Al Mayo on RUST! Click here. (Al Mayo is a prolific poster of HO scale train videos. Many on-line HO scale hobbyists mention Al with reverence.)

5. And another which demonstrates an additional weathering step to make your train look REALLY abused!

The tips and videos above are just a small sampling of what is available on the internet. Use your search skills and Google to find the treasure of information available to you.

I also purchased a DVD set entitled “How to Paint a Steam Locomotive” by Jeff Johnston. The video contained some very good information that is not generally available (or, at least, I haven’t found it) on the internet. Jeff has set up a site which contains some interesting information along with his videos. Click here to check out Jeff’s site.

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